University of Birmingham

University Information, Campus and History
(Birmingham, West Midlands, England)

The University of Birmingham is a leading research-driven university in Britain. Located in one of Europe's cultural and commercial capitals, the university is home to around 26,000 students and offers instruction in the widest range of subjects. It also boats of a diverse academic community, with over 4,000 international students from 150 countries.

The University was founded in 1875, making it the oldest civic university in England. It began as Mason Science College, which would later become the university's core, with the Departments of Chemistry, Botany, and Physiology as the first academic units. Other departments soon followed, and the addition of the Medical School paved the way for its incorporation as Mason University College in 1898. Its first chancellor, Joseph Chamberlain, pushed for a Royal Charter which was eventually granted by Queen Victoria in 1900. Mason University College officially became the University of Birmingham via this charter on 31 May 1900.

Today, the University of Birmingham is one of the most popular universities in Britain, in terms of the number of applications per place. It produces more medical doctors than any other university in the UK and is a member of international academic networks, including Universitas 21 and the Russell Group of Universities.


With a 250-acre campus in Edgbaston, the University of Birmingham is very much its own community, with all the makings of a small town. It has shops, bars, cafes, salons, banks, and clinics, and even its own railway station. Self-contained flats are available for new students, while close to the campus are many shared properties available for rent, a number of which come with basic landlord insurance and good amenities. Of note separate student insurance may be necessary.

The University invests heavily in its sport facilities, and has some of the best sport and recreational centres in the country. Facilities range from swimming pools and athletics tracks to an outdoor activity centre for sailing, biking, and walking.

A comprehensive library and information service system gives students access to the university' enormous collection of books, periodicals, audio-visual material, and electronic information. Students are given an exclusive library account name, which they can use to avail of pickup services and access the library's online catalogue. The Special Collections section is especially famous for its rare books, many of which were published in the 1800s.

Famous Students

Many University of Birmingham graduates have gone on to become distinguished members of the academic community and made a name for themselves in their respective fields. The University served as the home for many famous people in sports, science, media, and many other areas.

The first black woman in the Cabinet of the United Kingdom, Valerie Amos, Baroness Amos, studied at the University of Birmingham before joining the government and engaging in extensive social and charity work. Sir Paul Nurse, who graduated from the university in 1970, won the 2001 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine for his discoveries on cell cycle regeneration. Novelist and literary critic Walter Allen graduated from the university in 1932 and went on to write 20 acclaimed books, the most notable of which is The English novel; a short critical history, widely read in university classes today.

Prospective students will find all they need to know at the University of Birmingham's official website. The website offers information on admission, application procedures, and course selection. A 2007 undergraduate and postgraduate prospectus in portable document format (PDF) can be downloaded for free from the site. You can also order a printed prospectus by calling +44 (0)121 415-8088.

Foreign students who wish to study at Birmingham can call their International Office at +(44) 121 414-2894 or email enquiries to Scholarships and student loans are open to local and foreign students, and there are specialised scholarships in different departments. For information on scholarships and financial support, call their Scholarships office at +44 121 414 3344.

Contact University of Birmingham:
Address: Admissions, The University of Birmingham. Edgbaston Park Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, West Midlands, England, UK
Tel: +44 (0)121 414 3344
Fax: +44 (0)121 414 3971
Birmingham University

Birmingham University

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